The old inspection station on Prospect Street near Pennington Avenue was in the news in 1938. As you read the article, you will note that many new cars were being rejected due to defects that apparently came upon the new vehicles while they were in transit from the factor to the dealer. It is interesting to note that "nearly 200 cars were in line awaiting inspection as they lined up on Brooks Street.
When I was a teenager with my very first car, I remember dreading the trip over to Prospect Street in Trenton to have my car inspected. I had a 1938 Ford "Business Coupe." (That's a model that only had a driver and passenger seat, and a small area in the back for golf clubs, baseball bats, lunch boxes, etc. I paid 25 bucks for the car from a guy in Morrisville.The tires were bald (remember 600 x 16 tires?), the muffler had a leak, as did the radiator, and there were other defects that turned up as I began to drive that little flat head V-8. With all those defects, that little car could move! I discovered another very serious and unknown defect one night when I and my buddy Don Slabicki were exiting Atlantic Products, where I worked in the shipping department. I was all set to show the other folks who were leaving the parking lot what that old Ford had under the hood. I flipped her into 1st, spun wheels and headed toward Johnston Avenue. A car was coming along the road at the time and I slammed on the MECHANICAL brakes. I heard a loud thump, the clanging of steel and the silence of a stalled engine. Popping the hood, I found that the battery didn't have a lock down clamp and it flipped off of its tray and slammed into the fan which had a number of bent out of shape fins from the collision. Remember that inspection station on Prospect Street? Remember: how we couldn't afford a new muffler from Penn Jersey or Pep Boys, so we put steel wool in the muffler and wrapped it tape, the guy who slid that headlight testing bar in front of the car and seeing that the left beam was out of line with the right beam which was also out of line, the vacuum windshield wipers that made a pass across the windshield every 10 or 15 seconds.....Remember how you drove up to the wheel alignment equipment and your car was raised as the inspector wiggled your wheels to check for bad wear and out of alignment problems? Remember looking anxiously at the M.V. guys who seemed to be required by the state to not smile and be cordial, but be sure to take those nasty pills every morning before work.......Ahh, the memories are rather pleasant these 70 years later, but at the time, they were !